Tablets: The Secret to Amazing In-Store Experience
Posted by Megan Webb-Morgan on March 21, 2013 in Business Technology [ 0 Comments ]
By 2015, there will be 82.1 million tablet users in the US – that according to Staples.com. So why shouldn’t your retail store be one of them? Tablets aren’t just for consumers – their usefulness can have far-reaching consequences for your retail store should you choose to take advantage of their many business functions.
From easier checkout and better customer service to mobile POS apps, the benefits of tablets to your store and your customers are innumerable. If you’re not sure where to get started, considered some basic, yet effective, uses.
Reduce Wait Times
Mobile POS systems can reduce customer wait times in several different ways. In conjunction with a traditional terminal, an associate with a mobile POS can check out customers who are waiting in line, thus shortening long lines and decreasing overall wait times during peak periods.
Having an associate check out customers on the sales floor can be awkward when customers have a lot of small items that need folding or bagging. However, it can prove quite advantageous in situations when customers wish to purchase a large, heavy, or bulky item – such as a refrigerator, jungle gym, or pallet of bricks. Rather than attempt to drag the item through the checkout, customers can pay for the item on their sales associate’s tablet.
- The Home Depot found this concept so favorable that, in 2010, they spent $64 million to implement a fully functional mobile POS system in 1,970 of their stores (NCR). Customers purchasing smaller items can still wait in line and go through a traditional POS terminal and wrap stand; others can have the mobile terminal be brought straight to them.
Expand Payment Options
Customers are used to speedy service at the register, and more and more of them prefer to pay with plastic rather than cash or check. When you’re starting up a new retail business, you need to be able to accept credit and debit cards.
Whether you’re a startup with limited resources or a seasoned business professional, you may not have the necessary funds to purchase and install a traditional POS system and all its components – the register, computer, peripherals, and software.
- Expand the payment options available to your customers by installing a mobile POS app on your tablet. This system comes with fewer startup costs than a standard POS terminal, enabling you to accept and process whatever payment method your customers prefer.
Provide Customers with More Information
Your sales associates are well-trained and highly knowledgeable – but, unfortunately, they don’t know everything. If a customer has a question they can’t answer, they have to radio a manager for help, or walk the customer to a register where they can look up the information. This process is tedious and frustrating for employee and customer alike.
Now, imagine putting a tablet in your associate’s hand. Suddenly, they have instant access to a wealth of information that they can pass on to the customer. They can look up product details, read customer reviews, or compare prices between different retailers.
When the tablet is connected to your store’s inventory tracking system, the associate can check what items are in stock or on order without ever leaving the customer’s side. There’s no limit to the questions they can answer:
- Do you have this in my size?
- Does this come in green?
- When will it be back in stock?
- Can I order 15 of these?
With their questions answered, customers are more satisfied – and more likely to make a purchase.
Whether you use them as your primary POS system, an ancillary tool to augment your stationary terminal, or simply as an informational device, tablets can help you improve your customers’ in-store experience and overall satisfaction with your business.
Photo credit: tabtimes.com